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Explore environmental studies at Columbia College
Humans interact with the natural environment in countless ways each day—and this multidisciplinary program at Columbia College looks at how our social, political and economic activities affect the natural systems around us.
From courses in American environmental history and literature to ethics, geography and biology, you will graduate with an understanding of both the cultural and scientific significance of work in this field. You will also gain practical skills in communications, reasoning and scientific study.
Opportunities to study:
- Environmental science
- Environmental history
- Environmental literature
Provide support to environmental fields
Environmental support roles are growing at a fast pace as our interconnected society better understands the influence of natural systems on our day-to-day lives. Your understanding of how our social, political and economic activities affect the environment will be valuable for scientific and engineering support roles as well as work with the public.
The flexibility of this degree offers you options in agriculture, conservation, sustainability and other related fields. It can also lead to opportunities to continue your education in environmental science at Columbia College.
Some possible paths include:
- Field Technician
- Nonprofit Support Staff
- Environmental Education Assistant
- Sustainability Coordinator
Dr. Melinda McPherson
"That’s how my specialty in the area of explosives developed. I wanted to get in the laboratory and work cases."Read about Melinda
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Your degree starts here Take these courses
Available program formats
- General education requirements 21 credit hours
- Core requirements 29 credit hours
- Electives 12 credit hours
- Total degree requirements 60 credit hours
Some courses you may take
Analysis of American environmental history from the colonial period to the present. This course considers the interrelationships between human society and the natural world in different bioregions of North America, focusing upon how ideas, attitudes, traditions, institutions, and technologies have reshaped and have been reshaped by ecosystems. It traces American Indian ecology, agricultural land use, natural resource conservation, urban pollution, and modern environmental movements. It offers special attention to social constructions of the environment such as romantic mysticism, utilitarian instrumentalism, and ecological science. Cross-listed as HIST 352W. Prerequisite: ENGL 133W and 3 hours of 100-level or higher HIST.
Laboratory experiences to complement BIOL/ENVS 115. Cross-listed as ENVS 115L. Prerequisite: BIOL/ENVS 115 or concurrent enrollment. BIOL/ENVS 115 must be taken as a co-requisite or completed before BIOL/ENVS 115L can be used as G.E. credit. G.E.
This course offers an introduction to geographic patterns of human distribution and activities around the world. Particular attention is given to the ways in which people relate to their physical environment, and how this relation has evolved as a result of demographic growth, social changes, and global economic and political forces. The course explores the sustainability of human systems on earth and the solutions that humans have developed to address global challenges. Course meets Multicultural graduation requirement.
An introduction to contemporary literature focusing on environmental issues and the importance of ecological balance. The course features nature writing, texts by environmentalists, and fiction containing ecological visions. Prerequisites: ENGL 133W.
December 29, 2016
Preaching what she’s practiced
Value Colleges listed Columbia College as the No. 2 school in Missouri for online programs in 2020.
April 20, 2020
"The day I walked into Columbia College, I felt more at home than any of the previous colleges I attended ever made me feel."
— Lauren Custer, Criminal Justice student
July 23, 2021